When the San Francisco Giants traded Jonathan Sanchez for Melky Cabrera this past Winter, the majority of the fan base seemingly felt indifference. It wasn’t that Melky sucked, it was just, well, it was Melky Cabrera. Sure, he was coming off a career season in Kansas City but prior to that, he was pretty average – his lone season in the National League (Atlanta, in ’10) possibly the worst of his career. Coming to a division in which hitting comes at a premium and half of his games are played in the vast and expansive AT&T Park, it wasn’t exactly the recipe you’d use to create an offensive weapon.
Except you can’t predict baseball.
The 27 year old outfielder, at least so far, has silenced the doubters, having a fantastic Spring and an even more impressive first month for the Giants, so much so that the Merc’s Carl Steward even threw out the extension word:
"Would you give him an Aaron Rowand contract — 5 years, $60 million — right now? Let’s take a vote. All those in favor say please, please, pretty please, yes. All opposed? Thought so. Crickets."
Whoa, whoa – say what? Extension? Already? And an average of $12 million a year? We’re all loving what Melky has done in his short time in orange and black, but, really?!
I love the way Melky plays – hard nosed, willing to play with an injury – he’s really just an old school talent, rounding the bases with authority, forcing non-needed throws with his gritty play. But seriously? $12 million a year?!?
Entering as a 4th year, Super-2 player, Cabrera will hit the open market this off-season if the Giants and the Melk Man can’t come to terms on some type of extension, but count me out on the 5 year, $60 million extension. If somebody wants to offer up that sort of deal, then I give them a Krukow tip of the cap, but I’d expect the Giants would be able to get the price down considerably – one that I’d hope Melky would take with open arms.
Assuming Cabrera continues his solid play (and little reason to think he wont), it’ll be an interesting off-season if he and the Giants can’t come to terms prior to November – but at an Aaron Rowand price, I just can’t do it.
I’d love to – but I can’t. I can’t read that book again.